A Celebration of Toni Morrison
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Image Credit: The American Library Association via FlickrMorrison understood the integral importance of the written and spoken word. Morrison was born Chloe Anthony Wofford in 1931 in Ohio. She often spoke of how her parents 'instill[ed] in her a love of reading, music and folklore along with clarity and perspective'. Such love was to be displayed throughout her life in her use of language, both written and spoken. Morrison was one of those people who took you on a journey every time she spoke. Understanding the importance of a story, she managed to relay her ideas and connect with people of different ages, race, and social standing. Morrison was never afraid to tackle issues head-on. In her 1987 novel Beloved she explored the haunting of a mother who had chosen to kill her baby rather than have it grow up in a world of slavery. As such, many of her works focused on the issues of identity and inequality in a divided America throughout its controversial and bloody history.
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I thought this was a fitting quote to end with: "I tell my students, 'When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game." In this way, Morrison reminds us of what it means to be human. In memory of Toni Morrison, February 18th 1931- August 5th 2019.
Toni Morrison was a national treasure, as good a storyteller, as captivating, in person as she was on the page. Her writing was a beautiful, meaningful challenge to our conscience and our moral imagination. What a gift to breathe the same air as her, if only for a while. pic.twitter.com/JG7Jgu4p9t— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) August 6, 2019